Opinions on lesser known chassis?

That had happened to us when we went from our original kart, a mid-2000s Haase, to our 2013 Kosmic. I’m pretty sure the frame was bent to some degree, as we picked up almost a second from our old chassis.

One convenient piece of the switch was that people can help us out a lot better now since when most of them are on the OTK group, they’ll know what to look for and help with both setup and driving. The guy we had helping us at the Route 66 race was adamant that our chassis was much too bound up on exit (along with an engine that was in desperate need of a rebuild). We made some adjustments and the last time I drove the kart it felt a lot better than before the races. We wouldn’t have found that same help had we stuck with the Haase brand.

Sorry, weird tangent, but back to the main point. Would you say having a decent chassis should be important, not in terms of name but the relative age and condition of the chassis? Our first kart was old, driven for years at the club weekend after weekend, with a couple flips in it’s lifetime if I remember correctly before we got it.

Another apology for just bombarding you guys with questions constantly.

Never apologize for questions. That’s what a discussion board is for. :wink:

Anyway, I’d 100% say that quality of the chassis is important. If the machine is beat up, not well maintained, or worn out, it won’t perform as well as it could when it was fresh. That’s not to say that some used karts can’t perform well, but it also depends on the level of competition you’re going up again.

A used kart might work great for a club race, but not for Supernats. :wink:

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The condition of the chassis is most important. Usually a used kart has been abused and used up.

However, if you keep your stuff in good shape, an older chassis can still be competitive within reason.

My favorite three examples:

  • Tommy Andersen setting fast lap in TaG Senior at SuperNats on a 2-year old Kosmic, including passing factory ART GP driver (now formula car hot shoe) Charles Leclerc.
  • Ashley Rogero winning/running up front at multiple national-level TaG races on Tony Karts that were between 2-3 seasons old.
  • Stepanova Nekeel switching from his brand new Vemme kart to a used Tony Kart he bought for $900 in the middle of the weekend at the event and going on to win the Rotax Grand Nationals on that kart in Senior Max.

If you take care of your kart and run frame protectors, don’t get into wrecks, and don’t have to bend it back multiple times… A chassis will serve you well for a few seasons.

I destroyed a kart at a Pro Tour race in 2012, a year old Exprit that had a full season of racing on it. We pulled a new Exprit out of the box, went out on the same setup, went the same time. So in that example, the year old kart was identical to the brand new kart.


Age is probably more important then brand (assuming you stay in the 5 or 6 factories we’ve mentioned).

Remember a kart works by flexing the tubing, and metal changes its properties with repeated flexure (work hardening). The olden days this didn’t have as much of an effect, these days chassis seem to be inherently softer (at least your OTK, BirelARTs etc) and don’t last as long.

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You said it can be competitive within reason, would you say there’s ever a point where a chassis is just plain too old though?

Without knowing the exact history its very difficult to make a judgement call.

One thing to note though is that there are a lot of mildly used karts being sold by teams that have told their drivers to buy new ones. So you can get a good deal on a 2 or 3 race old chassis and its relatively easy to track down the results of that driver to see if they got smashed.

No need to apologize, that’s what the forums are here for :brap:

When picking a chassis, new or used there are a lot of variables to consider. Additionally these variables are very unique for each person.

I think it would be fair to say you need a decent chassis in decent condition that offers decent support (when needed) at a decent price.

Something that’s still straight with no left rail sag, minimum grinding of the rails on the bottom, and in decent mechanical condition is a solid start.

As for less known/popular chassis it matters, and it doesnt. Again, it’s all down to your unique situation and goals. A brand being well known doesn’t necessarily equate to it being a good thing for you. For example Gold kart has been well known, but a kind of also ran for many years. They weren’t a “cool” chassis like OTK, CRG etc. David Fore joined them this year and they are at the pointy end of the field.

I’d recommend fokls try to not pay to much attention to “winning” when it comes to sales rhetoric. With 3000+ races across the US in a year, practically every chassis is likely to have won something, somewhere and practically every brand claims it. It’s redundant and it doesnt really matter. What matters is how that relates to your racing situation. Buying a chassis “just” because it won a big race, under a tent with fantastic resources doesn’t mean it’s going to work well for you all by yourself at the track trying to figure it out.

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I’d also mention that the inverse is true too. Just because you haven’t seen someone winning on ‘Chassis X’, doesn’t mean that you can’t tune your way to the front with enough seat time, and sticking with it. (Just as long as it stays fun running that chassis.)


I drove a Gold Kart in 2005 and it wasn’t bad at all. But I do like to think that Fore sat down in that initial meeting with Righetti Ridolfi, maybe over a coffee, and designed a chassis on a napkin.

Yeah that’s what I’m saying. They are a good chassis, as good as anything… Put in the right hands, a winner.

I recall Ryon Beachner taking a 90’s Tony Esprit to the streets of Lancaster a few years ago. He had some bad luck racing, but IIRC his times were top 4 in S1.

Yah, street races are a different beast, but nonetheless the idea that older chassis are not worth touching is not quite true.

There’s a guy that races at the local club with a 90’s PCR. It was his first kart that he bought and he hauls it in on the Ford Ranger he had in high school. Guy has the track record for Yamaha senior, set on a kart that was made before I was born!

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@NikG, I’m sure there was something wrong… Just couldn’t find out the issue. Had it to Franklin to check straightness, welds were good etc. Just didn’t work. I should say, it worked on hard YDS club tire. Not so much on soft tires for Regional racing.

My point is more along the line of support. We had none. Couldn’t get any answers from manufacturer or dealer as to why we had problems or what we could do to help it. Pretty much threw the whole trailer at it.

Unless you are top notch tuner, I think you are most definitely better on a chassis that has a support system. Even then, having someone that can answer questions is a big plus.

This guy is my hero.


I’d also cavat ‘support system’ with ‘running a chassis that is well known’, for confidence that it will respond to your tuning, if you’re starting from square one.

I’ve run chassis that have had strong ‘local support’, but never got much help from the company/team that ran them, so I ended up doing the tuning myself anyway.

He tried moving to a new Praga, and lost the club championship because of it… now he’s back on the PCR for next year

The K&K chassis looks like it is very close to the RR Extreme World Formula Chassis that I am running. I don’t know who developed the chassis, if it was K&K for RR or the other way around. I will say who ever developed it did a great job and it is competitive in the 100cc classes and x30 classes. I have been using it as a 100cc kart for this past season and it is competitive OTB.

My shop rebrands them as Kartechna karts and makes some changes to the them from RR. Such as going with 50mm axles, upgraded brakes, 25mm spindles, DWT LV Mag wheels.

The K&K Kart is Canadian developed by K&K and originally manufactured for them by EKS. It has …as of 2016 been manufactured for K&K by Righetti,straight bar… 2 bearing design. It is purpose built for “Briggs LO206 Racing only” with a Mini Cobra 950 chassis and identical Cobra 28mm Junior and 30 mm Senior chassis’ . K&K does not offer 100cc/Rotax or Tag chassis.

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I tend to agree with a lot of the comments here. If you’re within .5 second, then the make of chassis likely matters. Short of that…you can make most anything work.

The biggest thing I see that maybe not a lot of people have mentioned here is parts support. In karting, you’re going to bend axles, spindles, etc. Make sure you get a chassis that has local parts support, preferably at tracks in the area.